At work, we do something called SEO and we’ve just started doing what we call Reputation Management which is basically the reverse of SEO – they both use similar techniques and are both becoming something we are being asked more and more for by our customers.
Anyway……. a few years ago i was watching the MoBo awards, and Kelly Rowland and David Guetta performed their track “When love takes over” live to the crowd and to everyone watching at home on TV.
From the word go, the lyrics were off – she started in the wrong place and basically totally screwed up the first part of the song… Some would say that she forgot her lyrics… Some may say there was a sound problem – either way it didn’t paint a good picture of the singer as (IIRC) she was just starting out her solo career (or at least its the first time i’d heard from her since DC)
A year or so later i decided to try and find the video as a friend of mine didn’t believe me that it happened…. And i couldn’t find.. anything! At the time i had forgotten what live performance she had sung at when she’d fluffed the lyrics – i actually thought it was an MTV Music Awards, but despite that we could not find a video that proved it! There was no talk of it on forums, blogs…. it was like someone had been paid to completely remove it from the Internet. I was using terms like kelly rowland forgot lyrics and many, many variations of that… still found nothing.
The track then came on the radio this morning – and as normal it set me off looking for the proof when i happened to change my search keywords to something (as a stab in the dark) and got lucky… i found this website.
The website confirmed my statement;
Kelly Rowland recently tried to sing at the MOBO awards in Glasgow, England. The former Destiny’s Child singer momentarily stopped at the beginning of her performance of the track – a collaboration with David Guetta.
And there was an embedded video…. :O
Ok, so the plot is definitely thickening and it is looking more and more like someone has been actively removing traces of this happening from the web! However, the site I found did enlighten me to the name of the event where she messed up – it was the MoBo’s in 2009 – this then lead me into a corner of YouTube lined with all sorts of dodgy videos of the event and her performance…. but they all have one thing in common..
They are all the same performance – but either the sound is dodgy, they start just after the fail, OR they seem to have been edited to kind of mask the error – i have alarm bells ringing here.. It now seems that not only has someone cleverly concealed a lot of this info from the net – they seem to have edited/scrambled some of these videos to further hide her screw-up!
The only actual video that i found that 100% truly shows the singer messing up is this one;
Which happens to be one of the only decent videos i could find that was not on youtube!
So whats the deal then, Google? Have Miss Rowlands People paid you to block or “filter” anyone searching for this? Can money really buy you that kinda power? Or have some Rep Management peeps been paid a ton of cash to work like the clappers to get it removed from the net as best they can?
You hear about people trying to cover stuff up all the time now, injunctions and all that shite – but this happened a few years ago, when the Internet was a bit younger and things like Internet censorship were things only the paranoid web-geeks amongst us used to worry about.
This kinda thing also makes me really angry – as if this is something that has been done by Google to protect her “image” or whatever, then why couldnt the same have been done for Ruth Jeffreys as she was definitely more deserving of such treatment. Even after the TV show about Ruths problems aired, you could still find pics of her! (very easily too, although they do seem to mostly be gone now)
So in a nutshell i guess im trying to say that sometimes people can talk dirt about you online, and if this is an incorrect statement and its causing damage to you or your brand, then people like us can help get it pushed so far down google its like it never existed – but if you are a rich celeb and mess up your lyrics live on stage, its not fair that you can just ring google and pay a shed load of cash to remove it.